By now it’s common knowledge that reviewing your credit reports is an important financial habit to maintain. But where to find your credit reports might not be so obvious. Although one would think the companies that create the credit reports themselves should be the first stop, they’re not.
Instead, anyone hoping to find their credit reports should go to one place: AnnualCreditReport.com. Read on to learn what is AnnualCreditReport.com and how it works.
What Is AnnualCreditReport.com?
AnnualCreditReport.com was created by Central Source, LLC, a joint venture between the major credit reporting agencies (CRAs). The CRAs (Equifax, Experian, and TransUnion) have been mandated by law to make credit reports available for free, and that’s how AnnualCreditReport.com was created.
Although it might seem strange to go to a website like this for your credit reports, and especially one that isn’t yet as widely known as it ought to be, it can make life easier for you. Without it, you might have to go to each CRA individually to get their version of your credit report …
How to Get Your Free Credit Reports on AnnualCreditReport.com
… but with AnnualCreditReport.com, it’s easy to view your credit reports from all three CRAs at once. Just click on the “Request your free credit reports” button on the bottom left-hand side of AnnualCreditReport.com’s homepage. From there you’ll be taken to a form to fill out, and then you’ll be able to view your reports online. Of course, you can also opt to receive a copy of each in the mail if you prefer.
AnnualCreditReport.com doesn’t stop there. The website also has helpful content, such as what to look for when reviewing your credit report, how to protect your identity, information on credit report disputes, and more.
Why You Should Check Your Credit Reports
As easy as it is to go to AnnualCreditReport.com and obtain all three of your credit reports, you might still find yourself wondering why it’s so important to do so. However, this is a financial to-do not to be ignored, especially since the information on your credit reports can influence opportunities you want now and in the future.
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The data on your credit reports will affect your credit scores, and your credit scores determine your eligibility for new credit and other things, such as insurance. But that’s not all. Your credit scores also affect how much you’ll pay for new credit. The lower the scores, the higher the interest rates.
When you’re reviewing your credit reports, what you need to be looking for is inaccuracies that could be damaging your credit scores. Inaccuracies can also be a red flag to identity theft, depending on the nature of the mistake found on your reports. Either way, the sooner you spot the errors, the sooner you can get them fixed and make sure they don’t stand in the way of your regular life.